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Setting up forms in My ePortfolio

Forms are pages created by an institution, department, or unit designer that collect information from users. When you create a form you specify what fields it includes, what type of information each field collects, and whether a field is required. When users fill out a form it becomes an artifact in their My ePortfolio which they can share, edit, and add to collections, presentations, and learning objectives. Users can fill out a form multiple times and they can allow others to comment on or evaluate their entries. Because forms are structured, they provide scaffolding and guidance.

Forms are created in VU Collaborate, not in the My ePortfolio tool. Organisation-wide forms are created in the My ePortfolio area of the Admin Tools widget. Course forms are created from the Course Administration area for a specific unit.

Note: Forms are not unit specific. When you share a form with individuals in your unit they can use it in other units and repurpose it as desired.


    • Create a form for users working on long-term research projects. Include fields such as: Project Name, Description, Timeline, Requirements, and Project Plan. Require users to submit their completed form to a assessment dropbox folder for a unit on Long-term Research Projects that all users involved in graduate studies are enrolled in.
    • Create a form for recording work history information that users might want to include in resumes. Include fields such as: Employer Name, Supervisor, Contact Information, Period of Employment, Job Description, Accreditations, and Skills Development. Also include areas to attach Work Samples, Employment Evaluations and Letters of Reference.
    • Create a form that provides scaffolding and guidance to users who want to self-evaluate an artifact or presentation. Include areas to reflect on learning and personal goals, and a rubric to ensure consistent assessment. End the form with an area to associate the related item.

    Access the area for managing unit forms

  1. Open a unit.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • Click Space Admin on the navbar and then click Forms.
    • Click Forms in the Course Administration widget.

Parts of a Form

There are two areas to complete when creating a form: form details and form content. The details area contains the name and description of the form and which units have access to it. The content area contains the actual fields users fill out.

The content area of a form may contain two types of fields: system fields and custom fields.

System fields automatically populate with data from a user’s profile. Some typical system fields include:

  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Email
  • Picture
  • Address

Custom fields are filled in by the user. You define what type of information users enter in a custom field and whether it is required.

There are 12 custom field options:

  • Drop-down List  Creates a drop-down list of options that users can choose between. Use this option or a radio button when you want users to choose only one option from a predetermined list.
  • Tip: It is good practice to make the default value descriptive text rather than one of the options. For example, -- Select a file type -- or -- Choose an action --.

  • Radio Button List  Creates a set of radio buttons that users select one option from. Use this option or a drop-down list when you want users to choose only one option from a predetermined list.
  • Check Box List  Creates a set of check box items that users can select options from. Use this option when you want users to choose one or multiple options from a predetermined list.
  • Text Input - Simple Text  Creates a standard text field for entering text. You determine how many characters the text field accepts. You can also provide default text or instructions to help guide users’ responses.
  • Text Input - Formatted Text  Creates a text field that uses the HTML Editor. Formatted text fields allow you to use graphics, tables, links and other functionality available in the HTML Editor.
  • Numeric Input  Creates a field that only accepts numeric data. You can specify whether decimals and negatives are allowed.
  • Note: If the input contains numeric characters as well as symbols or text, use a simple text field instead. For example, for phone numbers or product numbers use a simple text field and provide examples such as, (555) 555-5555 or 1264-AX100.

  • Date and Time Input  Creates a standard date selector and calendar for selecting a date and/or time.
  • Information  Provides a rich text field for adding a content area to a form. A content area provides information to users rather than collecting it. For example, you could provide text instructions, a graph, or an image.
  • File Upload  Creates Add a File and Record Audio buttons and dialogs for each. You can specify what types of files users can upload and the maximum file size allowed.
  • Rubric Evaluation  Allows you to insert a rubric created in VU Collaborate. Use this option to gather consistent feedback from users. For example, create a peer evaluation form that includes a rubric with the appropriate assessment options.
  • Learning Portfolio Item Link  Creates an Add button and dialog that lets users associate the form with an item in their portfolio. You can restrict what types of items a user can link the form to. For example, if you have a form for reflecting on or evaluating a presentation, require that users link to the presentation in the form.
  • Note: When you follow a link in a form, you have the same permissions for the item as you do for the form, even if the permissions differ from your normal permissions for the item.

  • Org Unit  Creates a drop-down list of org units limited to a user's enrollments. You can define what type of org units display in the drop-down list (for example, Course, Group, Semester, etc). Use this field if you want to tie form data to an org unit.

Creating a Form

Set up a form

  1. On the Manage Forms page, click New Form.
  2. Enter a Name and Description.
  3. If you are creating a form for a department (or other org unit type above a unit in your organisation's hierarchy) and you only want to share the form with specific units (or other child org units) below the department rather than all child org units:
    1. Clear the Current Org Unit check box.
    2. Click Add Org Units.
    3. Select the org units you want to share the form with.
    4. Click Insert.
  4. Click Save.

Note: You can only share forms with org units below the org unit you are working from in your organisation's hierarchy; therefore, you cannot share forms created in a unit as this is the lowest org unit level forms are created in.

Add a System Field

  1. Click Add System Field.
  2. Select the Field Name you want to add.
  3. Click Add.

Add a Custom Field

  1. Click Add Custom Field.
  2. Enter a Field Name.
  3. Select the Required check box if the field is required.
  4. Choose the Data Type for the field.
  5. Fill in additional information based on the data type.
  6. Click Save.

Add a Separator between Fields

  1. Click Add Separator.
  2. Give the separator a Name.
  3. Select Show name on separator if you want the name to appear as a heading.
  4. Click Save.

Reorder Fields

  1. Click Reorder Fields.
  2. Select a new position for a field using the Sort Order drop-down list beside its name. The positions of other fields adjust accordingly.
  3. Click Save.

Edit a field

  1. Click the Edit icon beside the field’s name on the Edit Form Contents page.
  2. Make your changes.
  3. Click Save.